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© TargetGov 2014 Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement Gloria Larkin President, TargetGov January 29, 2014
© TargetGov 2014 Gloria Larkin President Nationally recognized federal contracting business development expert Author of The Basic Guide to Government Contracting Consultant & Trainer Clients have won billions in federal contracts Quoted in Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, INC Magazine, Bloomberg Educational Foundation Board Vice-Chair for WIPP Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 2
© TargetGov 2014 Agenda First impressions are critical Accurate representation Easily understood Capture the interest of agency contracting personnel Capture the interest of prime contractors Tricks to target your capability statements to a specific audience Key elements you must include Common mistakes Omissions that cripple Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 3
© TargetGov 2014 Types of Capability Statements Door-opener, used to begin relationship- building process – Obtain decision-maker meeting – Tool to use during meetings Requested as part of a Sources Sought or RFI response Required in a RFP response Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 4
© TargetGov 2014 First Impressions Are Critical Be professional – Ex: , web site, typos – No clip art, stock graphics Know your niche! Do not try to be all things Lead with your expertise Prove it! Mitigate risk Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 5
© TargetGov 2014 Where to Use a Capability Statement Person to Person Conferences Vendor outreach sessions Agency and base events Matchmaking Associations, social events Referral From decision-makers Virtual , web site, blog, LinkedIn Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 6
© TargetGov 2014 Identifying Targets for Your Capability Statement Your Company Possible Target You as a Prime contractor AGENCY You as a Subcontractor PRIMES You as a Team member Other VENDORS Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 7
© TargetGov 2014 Layers of Decision-Makers Small business representatives OSDBU, SADBU, SBLO Contracting and acquisition staff CO, KO Program and technical managers PM, COTR, end-user Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 8
© TargetGov 2014 A Poor Capability Statement Slams doors on you Highlights your weaknesses Proves that you are not competent Highlights the risk to hire you Proves you dont have a clue...and you DO NOT understand the customer …or the market! Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 9
© TargetGov Key Elements Needed to Get Noticed 1.Call it a Capability Statement 2.Core Competencies 3.Past Performance 4.Differentiators 5.Company Data Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 10
© TargetGov 2014 Capability Statement as Title Call it what it is! First words are Capability Statement Then your logo Then your contact info A mini business card across the top of the document Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 11
© TargetGov 2014 Core Competencies Section title: CORE COMPETENCIES Laser-focused on the target! Short introduction statement mentioning the target Ex: ABC Company provides the services [agency] requires to meet its mission of ____________ by providing _____________________________. Relate your companys core competencies to the targets specific needs Followed by key-word heavy bullet points Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 12
© TargetGov 2014 Past Performance Section title: PAST PERFORMANCE List past customers for whom you have done similar work. Prioritize by: 1.Internal to that agency 2.Related agency 3.Other government entities: federal, state, local 4.Commercial contracts Show the benefit to the customer This is NOT a resume! Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 13
© TargetGov 2014 Past Performance: Example 1 If you were the Prime: [Customer Name]: Provided x-y-z services to enable the effective use of a-b-c thereby reducing costs by $xxx,xxx over three years. Name contract vehicle & amount. Give contact reference, name, title, phone and . Note: If past projects do not relate to the targeted agencys needs, do not list. Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 14
© TargetGov 2014 Past Performance: Example 2 If you were the Subcontractor: As a subcontractor to PRIME [company name], provided the x-y-z services to enable the effective use of a-b-c thereby reducing costs by $xxxxx over three years. Give contact reference, name, title, phone and . Note: If past projects do not relate to the targeted agencys needs, do not list. Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 15
© TargetGov 2014 Past Performance: Example 3 If you were an employee: As an employee of [company name], provided the x-y-z services to enable the effective use of a-b-c thereby reducing costs by $xxxxx over three years. Give contact reference, name, title, phone and . Note: If a reference is not available, do not list. Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 16
© TargetGov 2014 Differentiators Defined #1 Unique features and/or benefits of a product, or aspects of a brand, that set it apart from competing products or brands Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 17 What Makes You Different
© TargetGov 2014 Differentiators #2 Identify what makes you different from your competitors Location Training ISO Exclusives Relationships Experience And how this benefits the targeted: Agency Prime Team Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 18
© TargetGov 2014 Differentiators Defined: #3 Government Contracting A succinct statement Focused on – Customer needs – Specific decision-maker – Upcoming contracts Highlights benefits Incorporate metrics Separates you from – Real Competition – Wanna-bes Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 19
© TargetGov 2014 Differentiators are NOT Socioeconomic certifications Generic statements Static, never changing One type fits all Quality people, services, products 100 or xx years of experience Solutions provider Best in class, world class, best of breed or other superlatives Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 20
© TargetGov 2014 Sample Differentiator Questions Why did your biggest customer want you? How and why is your company the best choice for the needs of this opportunity or agency? What is it about your services/products that make you stand out from the rest? What is it about your people that give you the advantage over your competitors? Why are your products better solutions than the others that are available? Is your business located near the targeted agency? Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 21
© TargetGov 2014 Ideal Differentiators Speak EXACTLY to requirements Speak exactly to that decision-maker – CO, COTR, PM, OSDBU, SBLO Are benefit-focused Include metrics Are straightforward, easy to understand Are branded to your company Better to have only 2 or 3 strong differentiators than an entire list of mediocre or poor Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 22
© TargetGov 2014 Company Data Federal: DUNS & CAGE Code NAICS (grouped) DOD: PSC & FSC codes GSA Schedule Contract Number(s) BPAs and other contract numbers Contract Numbers Socio-economic certifications: WOSB, 8(a), HUB Zone, SDVOB, Small Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 23
© TargetGov 2014 Company Data (Contd) 1 or 2 sentence summary of highlights Financial stability Number of employees Capacity Teams YOUR contact information: – Name – – Phone: office, direct – Printed on the Capability Statement, not attached as a business card Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 24
© TargetGov 2014 Graphic Design Elements Use your own branding elements Your logo Your colors Your style Your fonts Complement your web site, business cards Use up the entire page, do not think letterhead Spare the graphics: usually large file size Keep it in Word, save as a PDF Do NOT save as graphic file: tif or jpg Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 25
© TargetGov 2014 Tips for Success Tailor the Capability Statement to the target Use their terminology You will have many versions, one for each target Make sure the file size is small, under 1MB Save the PDF as YourCompanyNameCapabilityStatement.pdf Follow similar format for your website Follow same format for capability briefings Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 26
© TargetGov 2014 Review & Questions First impressions are critical Accurate representation Easily understood Capture the interest of agency contracting personnel Capture the interest of prime contractors. Tricks to target your capability statements to a specific audience Key elements you must include Common mistakes Omissions that cripple Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 27
© TargetGov 2014 What is Your Score? What does your business look like to the government decision makers? your Capability Statement PDF to: for your companys complimentary Capability Statement score Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 28
© TargetGov 2014 Contact Gloria Larkin President, TargetGov Crafting a Powerful Capability Statement 29
© TargetGov 2014 What's New in 2014: How to Refresh Your Capability Statement In Three Steps Gloria Larkin President, TargetGov.
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